Wednesday, February 19, 2014

End of the line

At my last check-up, my lovely nurse practitioner had noted my liver counts were off and she wanted to order a CT scan. This was ominous.

A few days later, as we drove to hospital to get the results, The Boy asked me, "What's your idea of a worst-case scenario?"

"One month," I said.

So we met with my NP, who told us pretty much what we'd expected: the Lump had metastasized and was now also taking up residence in my liver. There was an oral chemo we could try, without which I could assume my timeline to be about

one month.

I realize I forgot to ask what the best-case scenario might be. I've always been more pessimist than not.

So. Here we are.

I guess I should be running around fulfilling my bucket list (you know, like in that movie, Basket Case), but the weather has hardly been inviting. And between the totally tubular feeding and ongoing pain issues, I haven't had much energy for hang gliding or scuba diving (wait - those things were never on my list ...).

So part of me feels as though Aagh! The clock is ticking! And I'm sitting on the couch watching X-Files on Netflix!

And part of me thinks, what the heck does it matter, really? Do I need to cram a bunch of experiences into a couple of weeks to prove a point? Oo, it's the one with Peter Boyle.

Because anyway, who cares what I haven't done? That list would be a mile long for anyone.

Here are some things I have done:

Canoodled with wolves;

Eaten a ten-course lunch in Madrid;

Patted the tongue of a friendly Beluga;

Beluga at Mystic Aquarium

Spoken to 2,000 people from the stage at the Wang Theater;

Seen the Grand Canyon;

Helped train harbor seals;

Seal snorgle!

Fed handmade raw-chicken treats to lions and tigers at Big Cat Rescue;

Seen Paris from the Eiffel Tower;

Seen Conan O'Brien from a short, awkward distance;

Eaten at Momofuku, Chez Panisse, Le Bernadin, Au Pied de Cochon;

Fired an AK-47 and visited the Liberace Museum on the same day;

Lounged on a nude beach;

Made vermouth from scratch;

Grown and eaten my own tomatoes, warm and sweet, straight from the vine;

Made people laugh;

Baked my own bread;

Known real love.

Diego and Richard Serra

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Blogger Kristin Shoemaker said...

As I've said a trillion times since I (virtually) met you: I am so glad I can call you my friend. My life is richer for your presence.

I am also honored to have had you and the Boy visit. I know it wasn't easy, but it was nice to see you. And lick you (says Eddie).

Also, you said "Wang..." Huhhhuhhhuhhhuhhh.

Love you guys. A lot.

11:41 PM  
Blogger suzie sims-fletcher said...

This blog is supposed to be about hand baskets not buckets -what's up with THAT!?

I guess I will check back here for the next installment - the one with the best case scenario - after you ask, of course.

The desert course? The aperitif course? You are the food girl - what is THAT course?

In any case, I say there is room for more.

Nothing mushy - cuz you know.

11:57 PM  
Blogger Amy said...

You're inspiring me to feel content instead of always wanting more. What a huge, huge gift.

You made me cry with gratitude that you've had the best of life, true real honest love.


9:17 AM  
Anonymous JJ said...

So grateful to know you. So proud to have fed you. Love you very, very, very much xJJ

11:01 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I stumbled on this blog within the last month. So I am a stranger. Yet your voice is so alive to me. And watching x-files on Netflix makes you one of my peeps. Was "impacted random people" on your list? Should've been. Jean

4:40 PM  
Anonymous Cindy Hutter said...

So ridiculously sad reading this. Without words.

5:26 PM  
Blogger Melinda said...

I used to think Rob Petrie had my dream job: hanging out with Buddy and Sally all day and writing jokes for the Alan Brady Show. Then, in 2002 my job became hanging out with Carolyn Grantham all day and reading and writing about movies...and talking and laughing with Carolyn Grantham all day. It was only for a year but...

Done: Enabled Melinda to live her dream job.

7:15 PM  
Blogger Atticusf said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

11:34 PM  
Blogger Atticusf said...

Hi, Carolyn:

This is the once-dreadlocked-but-now-totally-suburbanized guy that lo those many, many years ago, you had the misfortune of having as a Freshman Composition instructor at Emerson.

I will never forget when every other student turned in an essay that began "In todays (sic) society, people shouldn't be racist…." you submitted a spot-on feminist deconstruction of the movie "Aliens." :-) I thought, "Yeah, she's got this."

I know we haven't been in contact in years but a certain redheaded person let me know what was going on. You're in my thoughts.

11:35 PM  
Blogger Dan Price said...

You can add "touched the lives of strangers" to that list. I've never commented on your blog before, but I've been reading for a number of years. I just wanted to thank you for giving us a window on your life (and also a seat at the table of some seriously great restaurants). The grace and humility with which you've handled your cancer is inspirational. I'm glad to say that in some small, strange internet way, I know you. You will be missed.

6:34 AM  
Blogger Saul Wisnia said...

Your latest post is both sobering and enpowering. I've said it before: You are a great wit, a great writer, and a better person. I continue to miss your smile and blogger banter (and tips, and encouragement) at 20 Overland. I will never stop doing so. Every time I look at lime-green jello, I'll think of you. I'd say to be brave, but you've already got more guts than anyone I know. So I'll just say this: Stay gold.

9:20 AM  
Blogger Saul Wisnia said...

Done: Helped Saul Wisnia start a blog and set an unattainable bar of passionate, powerful writing he'll continue shooting to approach.

9:23 AM  
Blogger Michael Buller said...

I have no words just lots of emotions. Thank you for sharing, Carolyn. I'm forever grateful that our writing paths crossed. You're in my thoughts.

7:08 PM  
Blogger Cynthia McKeown said...

Nothing to say except that I love you and am so glad to know you.


5:25 PM  
Anonymous Julie Dennehy said...

We don't know each other, but found your post through some Facebook connection, and I'm glad I did. I haven't accomplished a fraction of the cool things you have, so to honor your life and how you've lived it, I will pledge to accomplish one "bucket list" item left undone and do it in your name. Because you never know what cards the big guy is going to deal you every day, right? How's that for pay it forward?

9:24 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I could have written every line in Dan Price's post above. We have never met but I have followed your blog for years as a fellow Bostonian who enjoys food and has greatly enjoyed following your adventures. You and The Boy are in our thoughts.

8:03 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You wild woman you!

3:38 PM  
Anonymous Tammy said...

You are awesome!

10:21 AM  

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